Dodgers Finally Solve the Josh Hader Puzzle Thanks to Kiké Hernandez
The Dodgers have seen plenty of the Milwaukee Brewers lately between two series in a weeks span and last year’s NLCS. Yet the team had still not gotten to Josh Hader.
The Dodgers and the Brewers are not divisional opponents, but it sure feels that way lately. After playing them seven times in the 2018 NLCS, the two teams will play seven times in just over a week. Due to the odd schedule, it has made it feel like the Brewers are another divisional opponent despite being a member of the NL Central.
Entering Friday’s game, the Dodgers have seen plenty of Josh Hader yet they had been unable to do any damage against him. Last Friday the Dodgers loaded the bases against Hader but a couple of strikeouts ended the scoring threat. Coming into Friday’s game the Dodgers had been scoreless against the ace reliever dating back to last October.
More from LA Dodgers News
- Former Astro seemingly takes uncalled for shot at Cody Bellinger after Cubs deal
- Dodgers’ 2023 lineup without Trea Turner isn’t as impressive as it should be
- Recapping who Dodgers gained and lost in Rule 5 Draft
- Dodgers ironically sign former all-star to potentially replace Cody Bellinger
- Padres-Xander Bogaerts contract feels like Manny Machado desperation
That’s when Kiké Hernandez stepped into the batter’s box and stunned the Brewers and Josh Hader. Josh Hader had never allowed a home run with an 0-2 count prior to Hernandez’s three-run shot on Friday night. In fact, in an 0-2 count, Hader was just about automatics holding opponents to a .049 average with 62 strikeouts in 81 at-bats. He had only allowed four base hits on an 0-2 count, with zero being a home run.
Kiké has made it known in past seasons that he mashes left-handed pitching and on Friday night he homered off the best left-handed reliever in the game. The Dodgers had been inching closer to getting runs across the board against Hader and on Friday it happened in the unlikeliest of circumstances. An 0-2 count, on a fastball, left up and over the plate, and Kiké made Josh Hader pay for it.
After this weekend’s series, the Dodgers and Brewers will not see each other for the rest of the season unless the two teams happen to meet up in the playoffs for another thrilling series. If they do happen to see each other in the postseason the Dodgers should have better at-bats if they see Hader again in a critical spot of a postseason game. Despite being nearly unhittable against the rest of MLB, the Dodgers have put together solid at-bats against him.